Blog Entry

Iverson gives play-by-play of his own demise

Posted on: August 21, 2009 1:15 pm
Edited on: August 21, 2009 4:17 pm
When Allen Iverson entered the NBA in 1996, people wore beepers. Seriously, Twitter Nation, to communicate with someone, here's what you did in 1996: You called their beeper number, listened for the beeps, punched in your phone number, and waited. Sometimes they'd call you back, sometimes they wouldn't.

It was slightly more effective than smoke signals, or rotary dialing.

Which brings us to the technical innovation of 2009 and how Iverson is using it to offer play-by-play of his own demise.

Iverson, a certain Hall of Famer coming off a $20 million-a-year salary who can't find an NBA job, has been waxing poetic about his comeback via Twitter updates. We call it a comeback because, well, Iverson does -- and also because he was for all intents and purposes retired down the stretch of a miserable stint with the Pistons last year. A proud 10-time All-Star, Iverson couldn't stomach coming off the bench for Michael Curry, who became only the latest coach to get fired after coaching A.I. Iverson went so far as to say that he'd retire for real before coming off another team's bench. But what he really couldn't stomach was the decline of his game. He's 34, his body has absorbed incalculable mileage, and he can't do the one thing he's always done better than anybody else -- get to the basket and score, by any means necessary.

Neil Paine of analyzed Iverson's statistical decline and was spot-on in concluding that one of the problems is that while A.I. can still get to the basket, he's finishing with a lower percentage than he used to. That's what happens to players like Iverson when they get old; they don't fade away, they flame out like a comet.

I don't want to get too much into Iverson's sudden Twitter fetish. You can read the updates yourself. But the tone and volume of updates picked up noticeably this week, with A.I. saying that his "people" are telling him that he's "close to a deal." That was Wednesday morning. Still no deal.

Iverson also has floated the teams with whom he's apparently close to signing. "Waiting for the call," he wrote. "Charlotte, Miami, NY." Iverson, who has thrived off negative energy from his doubters since the moment he was drafted, also wrote, "If you think I am just going away, think again! ... I have heard all of the doubters, but they should know that I will not be broken."

Bobcats coach Larry Brown said this week that he'd gladly coach Iverson again, but didn't want to insult him with an offer that probably would be somewhere between the minimum and the mid-level exception. Miami? Why? As for the Knicks, we told you three weeks ago on this site that the Knicks had "zero" interest in Iverson. That remains true. Just ask the dozen media outlets that wrote it again this week.

Before you brand me an Iverson hater, think again (as A.I. would say). I've known him and covered him since his rookie year. I haven't liked everything he's done, but I've always liked him and enjoyed watching his career. For me, Iverson and Kobe have been my favorite post-Jordan players to watch. So if you're looking for A.I. bashing, or if you want to read someone who's hoping Iverson fails in his attempt to revive his suddenly dormant career, you've come to the wrong place.

I hope he succeeds. I hope he winds up somewhere that's a good fit, on a team that he can help. Some people are ready for the smiling, sanitized stars of the new NBA to take over and leave Iverson's rough public image and his innovative/frustrating/selfish game in the past. Not me. 

But in all the Twitter updates, amid all the bravado, I don't see the one line that Iverson needs to write. I don't see him stating that he'd accept a bench role, that he'd be willing to do what he could've done in Detroit -- which is allow his scoring gifts to impact the game as a reserve. If Iverson would say that, he might actually be getting some interest from teams other than the bottom-feeders whose intentions are really about the lowest common denominator: signing Iverson to sell tickets as opposed to signing him to improve their team.

I don't know how many more Twitter updates we'll see before Iverson signs somewhere. Maybe I'll page him and ask.



Since: Aug 2, 2007
Posted on: August 21, 2009 9:26 pm

If I never seen Ai. LOL!

If i never seen Ai play again it would be wayyyyyy 2 soon. This guy has always been a cancer and will never be a leader!

He is selfish, arrogant and DUMB AS DIRT just listen to him speak. Once he open his mouth you know he has the brain of a Ferret!

Sure he will always have more money than I do unless i hit the lottery but going by NBA standards this guy is a first class TURD! And thats saying something because the NBA is FULL of TURDS!! the only thing this guy will be leading the league in is horrible tattoos! LOL!


Since: Dec 11, 2006
Posted on: August 21, 2009 9:16 pm

Iverson gives play-by-play of his own demise

yeah it's good to see someone not bashing Iverson. Weather you hate him or you love him he has always entertained fans and people can't deny that. A true competitor. It's funny though when Iverson said "Practice" everyone dogged him saying he thinks he's better than everyone but than Favre can go skip the whole offseason workouts and people let him do that. How is it a double standard. Iverson atleast already knew his teammates can't say that for Favre. So if someone has some answers let me know cause i'd like to hear them. AI is a for sure hall of famer regardless and i hope he goes to the Miami Heat.

Since: Mar 23, 2009
Posted on: August 21, 2009 7:36 pm

Iverson gives play-by-play of his own demise

I just hope he doesn't end up with the Warriors. He's the kind of run-and-gun player Nelson likes, so I think it might be considered. However, any playing time he got would take away from the development of Ellis, Curry, and Morrow. Also, his ball hogging would impeed the development of the young frontcourt players on the team as well, even though he wouldn't actually be taking their minutes. I think that it would be a big mistake on the Warriors part to sign him.

Since: Aug 21, 2009
Posted on: August 21, 2009 6:23 pm

Iverson gives play-by-play of his own demise

Think A.I. should sign to a minimum salaray off the bench for the lakers=) PHil can coach anyone with an attitude far

Since: May 6, 2009
Posted on: August 21, 2009 6:04 pm

Iverson gives play-by-play of his own demise

Iverson is greedy and is a cancer to any team that signs him. He comes to Atlantic city, acts a fool and tips nobody. Hope he signs somewhere far from jersey.

Since: Mar 25, 2008
Posted on: August 21, 2009 5:58 pm

Iverson gives play-by-play of his own demise

Yes I think he is going to be a nice addition to the cavaliers.But he should realize now that he is not the main man.He will coming off the bench.He is not going to be a Batman anymore,not even a Robin.He should be like the Great Gary Payton during his Miami days.

Since: Apr 23, 2009
Posted on: August 21, 2009 5:28 pm

Iverson gives play-by-play of his own demise

iverson is still good enough for an nba job

Since: Dec 3, 2006
Posted on: August 21, 2009 4:48 pm

Iverson gives play-by-play of his own demise

maybe the Cavs should make him an offer.  He could be the second option behind Lebron.  Shaqs going to get his 17 pts just by accident.  Problem is he doesn't want to be second fiddle to anyone.  If he would accept a backup role or even be willing to be the second or third option he might get a lot of interest.  He still thinks he's the man.  At this point he's more robin than batman.

Since: Dec 28, 2006
Posted on: August 21, 2009 3:36 pm

Iverson gives play-by-play of his own demise

i cant imagine explaining beepers to my grandchildren. those were stupid. and i still have the fond memories of iverson on the 76ers. good times. 

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